The Bombay high court on Tuesday told a Parsi petitioner he could not be termed “poor” if his income was more than Rs 50,000 a month.
“If it (income) is above Rs50,000, you are not a poor Parsi,” a division bench of justice P B Majmudar and justice R D Dhanuka said.
The court was hearing a petition filed by Rohinton Taraporewala against the Bombay Parsi Punchayet’s president and other trustees, who had declared him ineligible for a Panthaky Baug flat he had applied for.
BPP had earlier told the court that it considers a Parsi who earns under Rs50,000 a month “poor” and hence eligible for allotment of a flat at a subsidised rate. The petitioner, who resides in Tarapur, states he is poor and eligible for a flat.
The BPP counsel on Tuesday pointed out that the petitioner had around 20 acres of agricultural land in Dahanu and Rs50 lakh in fixed deposits.
“There is no way he can say he’s a poor Parsi,” the counsel argued.
The petitioner’s lawyer Satyajit Mirajkar countered that flats have been allotted to those earning more than Rs70-80,000 per month.
BPP also said that these flats were meant for Parsis in Mumbai only.
“Then why did they give a form for applying in the first place?” Mirajkar questioned.
The petitioner claimed he had already deposited Rs5lakh for the flat. The BPP is yet to respond to this.
The court has said it would consider the petitioner’s case if he fell within the income criterion.
The judges, while adjourning the hearing till April 18, directed the petitioner to serve a copy of the petition to BPP.